Feb. 24, 2011
The Auburn baseball team plays host to Radford for a three-game series this weekend at Plainsman Park. Game times for the weekend are 3pm on both Friday and Saturday and 1pm on Sunday.
Sunday is Family Day at the Park and fans can purchase four tickets, four hot dogs and four drinks for $30 (advance purchase only). It is also a Hoops Special and fans will receive free admission with a men's basketball vs. Arkansas ticket stub from Saturday (limit one per stub). Following the game there will be an autograph session with the team.
Auburn is 3-1 following its Tuesday win over Jacksonville State at Plainsman Park.
Senior infielder Justin Hargett carries a four-game hitting streak into the contest and he leads the team with five RBIs and is second with a .429 batting average. Junior outfielder Creede Simpson leads the team with a .500 batting average.
Auburn will employ the same rotation as it did on opening weekend, starting sophomore RHP Slade Smith (1-0, 6.35) on Friday, junior LHP Cory Luckie (0-1, 6.75) on Saturday and junior RHP Derek Varnadore (1-0, 0.00) on Sunday.
Radford is 2-1 on the year and will counter with sophomore RHP Eddie Butler (0-0, 4.76) on Friday, junior RHP Mark Peterson (0-0, 1.80) on Saturday and senior RHP Bobby Bolling (0-0, 2.08) on Sunday.
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WEEKEND PITCHING ROTATIONS
Friday, Feb. 18 (auburntigers.com audio / WKKR 97.7 FM)
Radford at Auburn 3PM Plainsman Park
So. RHP Eddie Butler (0-0, 4.76) vs. So. RHP Slade Smith (1-0, 6.35)
Saturday, Feb. 19 (auburntigers.com audio / WMXA 96.7 FM)
Radford at Auburn 3PM Plainsman Park
Jr. RHP Mark Peterson (0-0, 1.80) vs. Jr. LHP Cory Luckie (0-1, 6.75)
Sunday, Feb. 20 (auburntigers.com audio /WKKR 97.7 FM)
Radford at Auburn 1PM Plainsman Park
Sr. RHP Bobby Bolling (0-0, 2.08) vs. Jr. RHP Derek Varnadore (1-0, 0.00)
FROM SLUGGOS TO SMALL BALL
After leading the country in home runs in 2010 with 131, Auburn has just one long ball this season but has instead placed down five bunt base hits and one sacrifce bunt ... Creede Simpson leads the way with a pair of bunt base hits, both of which came against Jacksonville State.
Tony Caldwell's first career grand slam in the first inning of the 9-4 win over Jacksonville State was the first of his collegiate career ... He tied his career high with four RBIs in the win, which he had previously set on April 5, 2009, in a 12-10 win at Mississippi State.
LAST TIME OUT
Auburn defeated Jacksonville State, 9-4, behind Tony Caldwell's first-inning grand slam and 4 2/3 innings of scoreless relief from Jon Luke Jacobs ... Jacobs picked up his first win since March 28, 2009, at Vanderbilt by holding Jacksonville State to just two hits without issuing a walk while striking out five ... Dan Gamache finished the game 1-for-4 with two RBIs while Creede Simpson (3-for-5, 2 R) and Casey McElroy (2-for-5, 3 R) scored five of the team's nine runs.
Auburn closes out its nine-game season-opening home stand with a two-game series with Bethune Cookman ... Wednesday's game has been moved up to a 4pm start time due to the men's basketball game against Ole Miss at the Auburn Arena at 7pm that same night.
SENIOR CLASS AWARD
Kevin Patterson is one of 30 candidates for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award, it was announced on Thursday, Feb. 24. The only player from a SEC school to be among the 30, he carries a 3.30 GPA in ecomonics and was the First Team All-SEC DH in 2010 when he hit .315 with six doubles, two triples, 16 home runs and 33 RBIs.
After four games this season, Auburn's run production of 29 runs matches what the team scored through the first four games of the 2010 season, with each team going 3-1 ... The 2011 team has collected 16 extra-base hits (15 doubles, a home run) while last year's squad had the same amount of extra-base hits (10 doubles, a triple, five home runs) ... The difference is in the pitching staff, which had surrendered 27 runs last year while this year it has allowed 22.
Jr. RHP Derek Varnadore had quite an impressive debut on Sunday vs. UAB (2/22) as he threw seven shutout innings of baseball, allowing three hits and a walk while striking out four in the 6-0 win ... He did not allow a base runner until there were two outs in the third (a walk) and he did not allow a hit until there were two outs in the fifth ... Of the seven innings he pitched, he retired the leadoff hitter six times.
The Opening Day sellout crowd of 4,096 was the largest Opening Day crowd in Plainsman Park history, topping the 3,317 mark set in 2003 against Western Carolina ... The weekend crowd of 11,514 was also the third-largest crowd to watch a three-game series in Plainsman Park history and the biggest since 13,606 packed the park in April 2003 for Auburn's series against Alabama ... The average attendance of 3,838 is 15th-best in the nation after the first weekend of play.